Armed conflict in Ukraine almost as bad as last weekend in Chicago

This photograph was not taken in Chicago due to the photographer’s safety concerns.

KYIV—As Russian military forces maneuver to control the Donbas, violence in the key industrial region of Ukraine has become nearly as deadly as a weekend in the Midwest.

With 27 soldiers killed in action and another 49 wounded for a total of 76 casualties on both sides of the conflict, Russia’s latest campaign has caused a devastating loss of life.  Analysts expressed grave concern when they noticed that the volume of casualties in Eastern Europe is making the Russia-Ukraine War just about as dangerous as being in Chicago.

“These are seriously troubling numbers,” said Ronda Hoefler, Combat Analyst for the Rand Corporation.  “If the war in Ukraine gets any hotter, its refugees may actually consider Chicago a viable and even familiar place to seek refuge, given the similarity in the rate at which people are shot and killed there.”

Having failed to capture the Ukrainian capital of Kyiv, Russian forces are engaged in a bloody effort to subdue the eastern regions of Luhansk and Donetsk.  In Sievierodonetsk, hundreds of civilians are presumed to be sheltering in underground bunkers in the Azot chemical plant as the invading Russian army continues its bombardment of the city.  Lawmakers have speedily drafted and passed expensive aid packages to give direct assistance to the frightened, desperate people of Ukraine.

“But at least the Ukrainians aren’t dodging rounds from Uzis and Thompson submachine guns, or having to take cover from pipe bombs loaded with rusty nails and birdshot,” Hoefler noted.  “That kind of terror appears to be concentrated within the regions of Garfield Park, Englewood, South Shore… much of the South Side, actually.”

As the violence in Eastern Europe escalates, Hoefler and her colleagues are closely monitoring the tally of human casualties for warning signs of acceleration.  “If it gets as bad as Baltimore or, god forbid, St. Louis, real estate’s going to take a big hit in the Donbas.”